Monday, October 20, 2008

Rhinebeck 2: Rhinebeckier

Caution: Picture Heavy Post Ahead!

Rhinebeck this year was seriously wonderful, though how it could be anything else is beyond me. You put enough sheepy things in one place and I'm fairly certain you're guaranteed a good time. Knitting Jenn from DC and I drove up Friday night and made a late arrival at our b&b, the lovely Creek Locks B&B in Rosendale. We slept like babies on one of the most comfy beds I've ever had the pleasure of sleeping in, in a completely adorable renovated 1860s farmhouse. Breakfast was delish! So they've got both the B's in that equation totally down.

We got an early start but to Jenn's infinite dismay were parked further away from the entrance gate than we were last year when we were practically at the gate. I don't know that we will ever be able to rival that spot ever again. I get out of the car, and immediately hear my name. It's our parking spot neighbor who happens to be Shameka from my Sit'n'Knit meetup group. She knit me the crofter's cowl I got at the neckwarmer swap a couple weeks ago which I happened to be wearing over my Enid cardigan (she also made me the best stitch markers ever)! How very fortuitous! Perfect timing turned out to be the theme of the weekend.

After picking up coffee, Jenn and I went about our business at a fairly leisurely pace. Having two days to do it all definitely allowed us to meander and take our time. I was less camera happy this year in the booths, but I made sure to snap shots of some of the funny signs that were posted here and there.

We spent plenty of time visiting the animals and happened upon the "Best Fleece" judging for both the white wool on Saturday and colored wool sheep on Sunday. Both were won by the same farm Pitchfork Farm in Michigan. Definitely looked like some quality fleece to me.

1. 100_2230, 2. Photogenic, 3. Sleepy Sheepy, 4. What great big horns you have, 5. 100_2200, 6. 100_2203, 7. Holy crap! There's a dog!, 8. 100_2148, 9. Sheep with Bandanas, 10. 100_2108, 11. 100_2171, 12. Itty bitty diva sheep

I spent what I am coming to understand is a simply obscene amount of money. I would actually prefer not to think about it. Instead, I will think of it thus:

Now that's an economic plan I can get behind!

We happened upon the Llama and Alpaca parade with BeBop and Dewitt.

We chronicled our rapidly expanding stashes by photographing the car every time we went to drop stuff off. Trip 1:

End of Day 1:

Towards the end of the day I made a major purchase:

I wanted to compare the single treadle Hitchhiker wheel with the double treadle folding Ashford Kiwi but the two that were in stock were already sold by the time I got to the Merlin Tree booth! Once I got the hang of the single treadle though it was a piece of cake. Now we'll see what I'm able to do with it.

We left the fairgrounds at the end of the day and headed to the Ravelry party where I stared stalkerishly at Ann and Kay of Mason Dixon Knitting fame for most of the night. We froze our butts off but had a great time and I'm glad we hung around for the whole evening because I actually won an awesome raffle prize: A spindle kit from Spunky Eclectic! !

The cupcakes were pretty sweet too.

Day 2 dawned cold and sunny. I had sewn the buttons on my Briar Rose Brompton Cardigan the night before so I actually had a new sweater to wear. I'm quite proud of myself for having finished two sweaters made with yarn I purchased at last Rhinebeck. Not so proud that I didn't actually photograph myself in them in all their finished glory.

The first stop of Day 2 was Briar Rose Fibers and we got there just as sale baskets were being put out so we got some amazing deals on cone remnants. Unfortunately I have no idea which yarns they are or how much yardage but they'll make some great small items.

We bought Jenn a birthday gift: two prints from this booth.

End of Day 2:

Luckily by lunctime on Sunday we had stopped purchasing and didn't need to make more trips to the car. Instead, we ate some lamb chili and watched the sheep dog trials for a while before taking a last spin through the vendor and barn areas where we happened upon these fellas:

We didn't hit any of the lunchtime meetups but managed to see a lot of people in our travels. A whole lot of people from my local sit n knit groups made it. I bumped (literally) into Maggie at Brooks Farm. Saw Kathe at lunch while waiting in line for lamb kabobs and lamb ravioli. Then there were the various knitting celebs we happened upon. Saw Franklin, Ann & Kay, Amy Singer and the Yarn Harlot.

The weather was chilly but perfect for sweaters. The trees were beautiful and it was just generally a lovely weekend. Can't wait to come back next year!

And just when you got into the traffic leaving and thought you were safe from temptation, there were these ladies hocking bunnies on the side of Route 9.

I don't really want to contemplate the enormity of what I bought, but if you do check it out:

Click to see notes